You wake up on the 2nd January still a little foggy from your New Year’s hangover and overall festive indulgence and think “Where did last year go?” But it’s a wonderful fresh start, a hopeful new year. You crawl out of the cave you've been hiding in for 2 weeks, don the business attire and do the alien commute. "It’s great to see bobble head and ‘man that wears too short shorts’ again" you think, nodding to not so strange strangers. For the next week and a half every new email or phone call gets an enthusiastic “Happy New Year!” and you reminisce about the frolics and food and the obscene amount of money spent.
It’s now the 14th January and your very first blood test of the year, yay! The nurse points out there is quite a bit of scar tissue in your left arm so let’s try the right. It’s a New Year, let’s try a new arm! Everything is wonderful and positive especially when the GP calls the next day to say you've swung from euthryoid to hypothyroid, a TSH from 0.05 to 7.5 in the matter of 2 months. An increase in medication will fix that and you feel slightly satisfied that the festive weight gain and severe exhaustion can be blamed on a naughty gland in your throat.
It’s now the 23rd January, one week into the medication increase and not much change in symptoms. Every morning is like waking up from 6 months of hibernation without the benefit of looking much trimmer. But I get up and go to work. Sometimes I will feel a little bit of energy surge through my tired old bones, sometimes I’m as flat as a pancake (a normal pancake, not a Scottish one which is actually quite thick).
This is a brand new year, my first new year after being diagnosed with Hashimoto’s last June. It’s going to be a great year and I've decided I'm not going to let this disease/disorder/dysfunction/damnation get me down. I am deliberately writing this on a down day where my energy has failed; my skin is peeling, my every minuscule cell aches and burns. But do you know what thyroid? I'm still functioning, working, managing, kicking ass. I am knowingly noting this down so any day I want to moan, groan or cry I can read this and focus on the positives. I am learning every day how to cope with this condition but more importantly learning how to listen and respond respectfully to my body.
Please hurry along January; I'm really looking forward to February.
NOTE TO SELF: If it's a bad day when you re-read this, remember that chocolate is wonderful.
SECOND NOTE TO SELF: If it's a REALLY bad day when you re-read this, remember that you are going to Rio in April for a "work trip".